imamommyFebruary 13, 2012

I was reading the post caphillsm wrote about her SS.... and I can relate. My son is 22. He moved back home after his lease ended (he was gone about 8-9 months. He was going to move back for 3-4 months to save up & move out. He quit his job to work for me but eventually quit working for me and has not found another job. My other son was going to move back to the West coast & I thought he was going to get a place nearby so he could gradually take over parenting DGS3. I figured my two son's could live together & share expenses... and my younger son has helped a great deal with DGS so it would be a help to my older son in the transition. Well, nothing is going as "planned" and I'm thinking that I am the only one that thought the plan would work.

My younger son stopped working for me 4 months ago. He has been living there about 6-7 months. He applied for unemployment but I had to nag him to do so. He has gained weight & plays video games all the time. He drinks and has admitted he is depressed. He told me he needs help & I want to help him. My older son moved back to the West coast but is now staying a few hours away and has only seen his son twice since New Years. Well, he has seen him once when DIL took the baby for a few days... which I am not happy about that but it's another issue. (I think it's not good/confusing for DGS, for DIL and DS to "play family" with DGS when he is visiting DIL. DS disagrees.) Anyway, my older son has no interest in moving hear me. He plans to find a place near his dad's family & says he's going to "fight" for his son. I doubt it... I mean, he isn't showing any interest in seeing the baby much since he has been back but the point is that he isn't getting a place near here. My younger son is certainly depressed & him being here is causing stress to the marriage.

My problems with SD are the same as they have been for two years. I have done as much as I can to disengage and the one issue that we currently disagree with is where SD should go to school. SD was failing at her school of residence. She was lying to the teachers, bullying a new girl & not doing her homework... getting up in class, etc. I was constantly having to drive her to the school to get homework (so we could check it) because she would say she "forgot" it at school. So, when she was going into the 6th grade, I suggested she transfer to the school in the district where I work. That way, if she "forgot" her work, it was closer for me to run her over to get it. Well, she abandoned the "I forgot it at school" line and I have abandoned asking for it. If she does it, good. If not, that's HER problem. Well, she still doesn't do her work, doesn't turn it in, fails tests, does a half @$$ed job on her projects, etc. so my "plan" for her to get a fresh start at the new school (where she wasn't known as a bully & liar) has not worked. ~Yes, I am noticing my "plans" never work~ So, the trimester ends on the 24th... at BOTH schools. I would like to put her back at the school of residence for the last trimester. She is going to fail & refuse to do her work no matter where she is and I am frustrated that DH expects me to get her to the bus on time... he hounds me if I'm running late, telling me "SD is gonna miss the bus" or if I have errands to do after work, I have to take her with me & she is so unpleasant, it is a chore so I usually go straight home and try to do errands during work hours while she is in school or on Friday when she goes to BM's. I resent having to work my schedule around her... in the morning & after work. She gets in my truck, stares out of the window & sometimes makes a huffy noise... like she's mad & breathing in loud short huffs. We get in the truck to come home and she falls asleep. She doesn't just put her head back & go to sleep, she sits forward & falls asleep but as her head leans forward or to the side, she jerks back up and immediately starts falling to the side again. It becomes annoying... and it has probably gotten to the point that everything she does annoys me. At home, she whispers in DH's ear or talks so low that he can't even hear her. He gets mad because he can't hear her and if he tells her to speak up, she says nevermind & goes away. She has recently begun to open her bedroom door, stick her hand out to signal her dad to "come here" so she can tell him something. He gets up & goes in there... doesn't see a problem with that. I haven't said anything to him about it, if he wants to get up & go listen to her, fine. He has told me that I cannot say anything to her... if I have a problem, that I need to tell him & he will deal with her. Of course, when I bring up a problem, he gets mad and tells me that he's sick of being in the middle of our war... apparently she complains a lot about me. He decided to be in the middle & now doesn't like it there. He recently backed off a little with that policy when I told him that if I have no say in what she does or if I am not even allowed to say something to her about anything, that was fine... he is the parent. But, don't ask me to do anything and don't bring it to me when there is a problem he doesn't know how to handle. I also remember a time when my daughter was going into puberty & needed me to bring her a change of pants at a certain time of the month and when the day comes that SD needs that service, he needs to plan for someone other than me to handle it... and other things like that. I told him he can't have it both ways.

So, now he has started a vendetta to get my son out of our house. I am not in disagreement that something needs to be done. My son has been there twice as long as we agreed. He won't work & plays video games all the time. I am frustrated too & talk to my son, who was telling me he needs help. I am trying to get him to a counselor & if he needs medication, he needs to see his doctor. He says he has no money for that because he hasn't had the motivation to finish his unemployment requirement to register for work. But, as far as DH is concerned, time has run out & he doesn't want to hear any excuses. He wants DS out... when I told him DS is depressed and I am worried he might get worse, that throwing him out right now might push him over the edge. I've had bouts of depression over the last 25 years... in fact, I had to go to counseling & get medication to deal with SD returning this year. I was having anxiety attacks. So, I am more sensitive to mental health issues. DH isn't buying it, he thinks it's just an excuse... he said if he's in a situation where he gets down, he shruggs it off and moves on, so he isn't sympathetic at all. He called the police to "evaluate" my son while I was not home. The police talked to my son & he told them he wasn't going to hurt himself so they told him & DH that they cannot remove him from the house, it is a civil situation and requires an eviction.

So, DH asked me to serve my son a 30 day eviction notice. I said no. The next day, he tells me that his brother (the guy that I hired & quit me, then his whole family blamed me for him not having a job) is coming over to serve my son. Well, we were having dinner... SD is sitting at the dinner table when DH's brother shows up. DH gives him the notice & explains it to him (in front of SD) and shows him to DS's room. My son opens the door & takes the paper & BIL leaves. I am livid. I can't see straight. I have not said a word to DH about it because I think if I do, I might not be able to control myself... and a couple of months ago, when we were in marriage counseling, that if he moves out (with SD) he isn't coming back. I know that SD is so eager to have me out of her life, that if he left & tried to come back (if we are able to work things out) that it would be a nightmare & impossible. So, I am hesitant to make a rash decision, but it has certainly changed how I feel about my DH.

I don't know if he would be so gung ho about throwing out my son if I hadn't disengaged and stopped doing things for his daughter. It feels retaliatory. But, he is not without reasons. My son figured out how to pop the lock to our room & got into our room while we were at work, a clear violation of my privacy. I talked to him about that & told him its unacceptable. He also figured out how to tap into our wi-fi, which DH does not want him using. It has really become a war zone.


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For me, the one thing I would be all over is your son's request for help. Regardless of finances or employment status, there are mental health clinics that he could go to that won't charge him anything. I would google those places and then find one and make an appointment. Tell him you are helping him get the help he requested, then take him there. At that point, whether he actually seeks help or not is up to him, but you've fulfilled his request. It also might just inspire him to get help and seek a new path.

The "popping the lock" thing is scary. That is actually a crime. To be honest, if you reported that he could be charged, regardless of whether he lives with you or not.

I like the "eviction" idea, but if its done as a family that is in equal agreement. Doesnt sound like you were all on the same page.

I think your son needs tough love. You could propose a plan with your DH and be on the same page. You can also attend support groups to stick with it.

I would LOVE to take my DH to such a group to see that his video game playing unemployed ADULT son is going to need to be uncomfortable for a while before things get better.

    Bookmark   February 13, 2012 at 4:04PM
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I can't believe DH had BIL come at dinner hour and serve eviction papers :-0

Wonder what he'd do if you served SD eviction papers and packed her bags and shipped her off to BM? After all she has put you through, he pulls this crap on your son. While I agree, son needs to do something and things have to change , but that stunt was a below the belt punch.

Am curious though as to how son drinks when he has no income. And breaking into your bedroom? Was he looking for money and/or your prescription bottle to your meds? If he's depressed as you suspect and drinking on top of it he's setting himself up for spiraling downward even more.

I would hope husband gives you a chance to see what help you can obtain for your son before he actually enforces those papers. Any state assistance and/or clinics staffed by volunteer doctors that would help son with cost or sliding scale?

I'm tellign you, Ima, I have no clue how you've made it this far with your SD. Waving Daddy to come to her bedroom door to whisper WTH? And the brat knows if not Daddy then BM, the Gmas ect will buy her crap and play her game.

I have no advice, but wanted you to know Im supportive of you. You've had one wham after another for quite a while now from all directions.

    Bookmark   February 13, 2012 at 7:30PM
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I agree with the ladies about finding help for your son.

Regarding the rest of everything, it sounds like your SD's well played tactics are finally paying off for her. She has worn everyone down and all of the negative fallout is landing you, you know. Your SD and even BM have been pulling all sorts of shenanigans since I have been reading this forum (4-5 years) and it has brought a lot of stress to your family. I realize the situation with your sons and the you DGS contributed too, but your DH doesn't seem to be as tolerant of your kids as you have been of his. You guys desperately need to go back to the marriage counselor, or otherwise cut your loses.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2012 at 2:32PM
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"but your DH doesn't seem to be as tolerant of your kids as you have been of his"

It really became an issue when I sat DH down & told him that he has told me that I am not to say anything to SD about anything, I am to come tell him so HE can deal with it.. but anytime I say anything to him, he gets angry that he is in the middle. Then he began to respond with what MY son is doing wrong instead of dealing with the issue... ie. SD didnt do her chore. Instead of telling SD to do her chore, he would say "well your son didn't do HIS chore!" and I consider it TWO issues. We can discuss the problem with my son not doing his chore... that's fine, but that is not going to solve the problem of his daughter not doing her chore... unless he wants to give his daughter a pass because my son does the same thing? I don't get that. My kids are grown. They are old enough to smoke, drink, have sex, vote... SD is about to turn 13. I guess if they do it, she can do it? I'm perfectly willing to discuss what my kids are doing and deal with them, but comparing what my kids do wrong to justify what his daughter is doing wrong isn't going to solve anything. That is where it goes when I try to talk to him, he is not wanting to deal with her, just like he avoids dealing with her mother.

On Thursday night or Friday morning, I heard SD tell DH to do her laundry over the weekend while she is with her mom. I did not hear his response but Sunday, after work he did her laundry & put it away, I didn't say a word but I did shake my head in disbelief. SD had a three day weekend so he was getting ready to go pick her up Monday after work & gets an automated E mail from the school. It informs him that SD has an afterschool detention today (Tuesday). SD's school is pretty liberal so they usually give lots of warnings before giving detention. SD has had detention last year, two behavioral write ups in one week. (happened the day she talked DH into letting her go to BM's for a Halloween party when it was DH's year to have SD. After she secured permission, she got written up twice the next day but didn't tell DH and he found out AFTER she got to attend the party) So, SD was written up this time for being in the gym locker room during lunch. It doesn't say what she was doing, but I do know each grade goes to lunch at different times so there are probably classes going on when SD is at lunch & she has no business in the locker room. I'm sure there are lots of backpacks left there while the class is out on the field doing PE. SD has a history of stealing things.... hmmm.

So, a few weeks ago, DH had gotten a library card for SD in case she needs to go use the library computer for school projects. It was my suggestion because he wanted to buy her a laptop to do her homework on & I protested because she is failing in school & nothing we've done so far has worked to motivate her to do her work & bring up her grades. I don't think she deserves one so I said she could always use the library computer or ~and ya better sit down for this~ AN ACTUAL ENCYCLOPEDIA if she HAD to research something. So, he got the card & the only "catch" was that if SD needs to go to the library, she needs to ask me... since I would have to drive specially to pick her up after work because the library closes at 5 and if she wants me to go out of my way, she should ASK. I also told him that it would benefit her to try to at least be cordial to me if she ever wants me to do her favors or go out of my way for her. He told her that... So, she has not asked and she has not gone to the library. She would rather not go than to be cordial or ask me. So, that's fine.

So, DH found out the library is open late on Tuesdays so he decided that since SD got detention on Tuesday, she can walk over to the library and hang out there until he gets off work. Again, I just shook my head & couldn't help but ask him, "so, you mean she gets detention for breaking rules in school and then she gets to go play on the computer at the library until 7pm?" And he says, "well, what choice do I have? I am at work & if you won't go get her, she will have to wait for me at the library." GRRRR So, now it's MY fault she is basically being rewarded by getting to hang out at the library for nearly four hours. (from 310-7) ~I'm tempted to go pick her up so she doesn't GET to have fun~ Now do you see why I am EVIL IMA?

    Bookmark   February 14, 2012 at 4:17PM
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--"~I'm tempted to go pick her up so she doesn't GET to have fun~ "--

That made me laugh. And no, you're not evil. What you're saying is exactly correct. What SS or son do or do not do should not be compared. One is an adult and one is a child besides that he uses the one to deflect from the issue of the other. Example 'SD is failing school'...'Son did not empty the garbage'. What the h*ll does one have to do with the other? Not a d*mn thing. But for him it effectively turns the discussion into what he'd rather focus on. Spares him from facing his neglect in realing dealing with the issue on the table.

Seriously, a very simple tactic to advert it back to the discussion at hand is to acknowledge you intend to discuss one issue/point/fact at a time but assure him you are open to then addressing any of his concerns on what he is in process of trying to deflect to. Otherwords, cut him off cold and in his tracks. It works quite well during grievance talks!

While he was being ever so 'oh, what can I do' about SD getting to sit in library for four hours is also failing to let the reality hit him that he may not be able to trust her to actually BE IN THE LIBRARY FOR FOUR HOURS. She just got a free pass to do what she pleases within easy access distance of that library or to invite friends of various types to join her and have a grand time. Perhaps she will actually be there, stay there and quietly behave herself this time, but I don't think she's shown the maturity or the trustworthiness to let it be a habit. Who's to say getting detention won't suddenly become desirable if the after time is 'fun'.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2012 at 5:09PM
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My daughter offered to go pick her up at the library shortly after she got there. She was there, not behaving quietly. She was sitting at a table with a boy, grabbed his energy drink & was simulating that she was going to pour it on the ground when my daughter called out her name & startled her. she gave the boy his drink & left with my daughter...

but you are exactly right. there are several apartment complexes between the school & library as well as a new subdivision. Lots of places for her to "hang" until 7 pm & get to the library by the time daddy shows up. and I agree, if he "rewards" her with that much freedom for getting detention... yeah, she will get detention more.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2012 at 8:03PM
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Long-time lurker here. I've been reading this forum since LAMom was on it. Anyway, IMA, I think you and your husband both have so much to deal with because of all the kids (with the exception it seems of your daughter). He probably didn't think he'd be dealing with bringing up a baby and you didn't think you'd be dealing with the stepdaughter from hell.

But from your posts about his daughter -- do you want to be bringing up her baby? Because she's 13 now (I think) and she just seems like she going to end up being the 16 year old mom who doesn't take care of her baby. And who's going to step in then?? Her mother, her father?

I think the best thing for you IMHO would be you and your husband setting up separate households until she's 18 but he said if he left he wouldn't be coming back. And the weird way he's dealing with your son. It just seems likes he may be mentally getting ready to go.

This is just my take from reading all your posts but it really seems like you have so much on your plate and he's not helping at all. He doesn't appreciate how you've been trying to help his daughter. I think you deserve a break from his daughter and I don't see that happening.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2012 at 2:44PM
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"but he said if he left he wouldn't be coming back."

Just want to clarify. I said if he leaves, he won't be coming back, he didn't say it. That's because I already know his daughter does not want to be here. She wants daddy all to herself & to be rid of me, since I "put ideas, like parenting, into his head" and if I weren't in the picture, she probably figures she can manipulate DH and do whatever she wants... and I don't disagree with that. DH is not aware of "how to parent" and has always relied on BM to tell him what needs to be done. He never realized, until she moved away & I pointed out to him that she isn't really a very good mom... leaving her kids for a man. But, I know that if he moved out with her, she might get validation that she was able to break us up... and once she is rid of me, she isn't going to move back without a fight, should we be able to work things out & reconcile. Having her move back would be a nightmare that I won't invite... unless her attitude toward me changes, which I won't hold my breath. I'm not willing to put my life on hold for the next 6 years because I know it's not realistic. Waiting until she is 18 is meaningless when I have three kids over 18 and not one of them moved out or was ready to be on their own at 18 so it's not really a magical age. My daughter works 2-3 jobs & helps take care of the baby when she's not working... she is not like her brothers.

My husband is learning though. Just when I think there is no hope for him, he seems to "get it". It's really funny because now we are raising DGS. My DS came back from the military & has not spent any significant time with his son, yet he has complained to me a few times about what he thinks we are doing wrong in parenting HIS son. (yet, he isn't willing to step up to do it) Well, DH was telling me what nerve my son has to say ANYTHING about how we are raising DGS, where is HE? Why isn't HE doing it? and mentions that he doesn't think my son contributes enough financially. (I get money from his bank account when I need it, no regular amount but $200-400 a month usually) THAT IS TWICE AS MUCH AS BM IS SUPPOSED TO PAY FOR SD.

Anyway, he gets done telling me that my son or DIL have no business telling us anything about how we raise DGS since they are not here & they are not doing anything to raise him. I let him finish and quietly said, "yes, I agree. That is probably why it bothers me SO much when BM called up after she moved away with her new BF, leaving BOTH her kids behind to be taken care of by us and her mother... and then SHE had the nerve to tell US what we are doing wrong and telling US how WE need to live our lives and how to raise SD... all while refusing to help AT ALL financially." and then I said, "the worse part is that YOU listened and tried to apease her."

And it wasn't until I pointed that out that he said, "yeah, you're right." and could see my point. Until then, he has always stood by the idea that "she is the mother and she has an equal voice in how our daughter is raised." Now that we are raising DGS, he doesn't want either of the absent parents to tell us what to do.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2012 at 3:54PM
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Ima, my dh is the exact same way. EVERYTIME I want to discuss something that ss has done he immedietly brings up my ds16. It's sooooo annoying!

Your dh can hand your son over any eviction papers he wants but it's your house as well. No police officer is going to make him leave if you don't agree to it. It's your house too. That was really crappy of your dh though. I'd be insanely mad.

There's nothing else really that I can say about your SD. I think she's a lost cause. Unfortunately for you, you have to continue to put up with her. I don't think I'd have the patience you've had.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2012 at 6:13PM
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